Ilham Aliyev: this day to forever remain in history of Azerbaijan
Shusha, which was under occupation for 28 and a half years, has been liberated on the battlefield, this history will live forever, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Victorious Commander-in-Chief Ilham Aliyev said in an address to the nation.
"This is the day of our glorious victory! We have won this victory on the battlefield, not at the negotiating table. I have said many times that, despite all the statements, there are military solutions to this conflict, the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and we are proving it on the battlefield today. Nearly 30 years of meaningless negotiations did not bring us any closer to the result. Our ancient historical lands had been under occupation for almost 30 years. In the process of negotiations, the Armenian side simply wanted to gain time, strengthen the status quo and perpetuate it. Over the years, signals sent to Azerbaijan from various power centers were repeatedly urging us to put up with the situation. However, showing determination, courage and political will, we did not go for any agreement that did not meet the interests of the Azerbaijani people. I have repeatedly stated from all international forums that the restoration of our lands and territorial integrity is our main task, and we are fulfilling this task. Negotiations did not yield any results. They were just trying to fool us, they were just trying to freeze the issue," Ilham Aliyev said.
"We have won this victory on the battlefield, we have won this victory by giving martyrs. May God have mercy on all our martyrs! I ask God's mercy for all our martyrs who died in the first Karabakh war and the second Karabakh war - the Patriotic war as we call it. I wish God's healing to our wounded compatriots. We are liberating our lands from occupiers at the cost of the lives and blood of our people, soldiers and officers. We are expelling the occupiers from our lands and we will expel them!” the head of state stressed.
"Shusha has a special place in the history of Azerbaijan. This is our ancient and historical city. For centuries, Azerbaijanis have lived, built and created in Shusha. Shusha is a pearl not only of Azerbaijan but also of the entire Caucasus. However, by occupying Shusha, the hated enemy dealt a great blow to our cultural heritage, destroyed our historical sites, destroyed our mosques and insulted us," he added.
"We have now returned to Shusha. We will restore all our historical sites, all our mosques, and a call to prayer will be heard in Shusha again after 28 years. A few years ago, at the opening of a mosque built on my instructions in the Jojuq Marjanly settlement which was liberated from occupation after the April 2016 fighting, I stated that this mosque was similar to the Shusha mosque. It is of the same size and architectural style. I said that one day we would restore our mosques destroyed by Armenian vandals in Shusha, and that day is coming. Today, the Azerbaijani flag is flying in Shusha. Today, all the people of Azerbaijan are proud to welcome this good news," the Azerbaijani leader noted.
"We have proved that the Azerbaijani people have lived in these lands for centuries. We have proved that the Armenian population was settled to these lands only 200 years ago, how it was resettled and for what purpose. We presented it all to the world community, with evidence and facts. We have proved that Nagorno-Karabakh is historical and ancient land of Azerbaijan, and this issue must be resolved on the basis of the norms and principles of international law," Ilham Aliyev continued.
"All of the world's leading organizations, all international organizations have adopted fair resolutions and decisions on the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Four resolutions of the UN Security Council, resolutions of the UN General Assembly, resolutions of the Non-Aligned Movement, resolutions of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, resolutions of the European Parliament and other international organizations unequivocally recognized Nagorno-Karabakh as an integral part of Azerbaijan. This gave us additional strength," the head of state recalled.
"If we had not done that, the processes surrounding the conflict today could cause us great problems. Over the years, we have been able to establish relations with many countries on the basis of sincere, businesslike and mutual respect. Many countries consider Azerbaijan a strategic partner, and this expression is already reflected in international documents. We have been able to establish relations with all neighboring countries on the basis of sincere friendship, mutual respect and mutual trust. If we had not done that, a completely different process could have taken place around the conflict today," the president of Azerbaijan concluded.